Friday, 21 January 2011

He'll always be on the ball now: Paul the Octopus receives permanent memorial in honour of World Cup predictions


On the ball: Paul the Octopus's monument is unveiled at the Sea Life aquarium in Oberhausen today

He'll go down in history as one of the faces of 2010 but now three months after his death, Paul the Octopus today received a permanent memorial.

The cephalopod shot to fame last summer after correctly predicting the results of several matches in the football World Cup in South Africa.

And after he passed away in his sleep in October, Paul's former carers at the Sea Life Centre in Oberhausen, Germany, decided the octopus should be given a shrine to mark his seemingly expert predictions.

The ashes of the tentacled creature are contained in a golden octopus urn visible through a see-through screen

Golden moment: The urn of a sculpture of Paul inside the ball

The tentacled creature correctly predicted the outcome of eight matches at the 2010 World Cup, including Germany's thrashing of England and Spain's victory over the Netherlands in the final.

He cost bookmakers thousands after floating languidly towards boxes of mussels draped in the colours of competing teams in the South African tournament last year.

The aquarium where Paul lived first mooted the idea of erecting a memorial to the octopus after his death last year and now the soothsayer's legacy has been enshrined with the permanent monument.

The statue is around 1.80 metres high with Paul straddled on top of a football, with a see-through window displaying a goden urn containing the octopus's ashes.

World Cup star: Paul the Octopus predicted the results of all seven of Germany's matches at the 2010 World Cup, as well as the final

Predictive Paul: The octopus oracle has been honoured with a shrine after his death at a German aquarium

A successor to Paul, a French octopus named Paul II, was unveiled at the aquarium on November 3 after spending two months in quarantine.

He has yet to attempt to follow his predecessor's fortune-telling but it is thought the Sea Life Centre may tempt him with flag-covered mussel treats for the 2012 European Championships in Ukraine and Poland.

After the original Paul's death last year, Stefan Porwoll, manager of the Oberhausen Sea Life Centre, said: ‘Paul delighted people from all continents with his seven consecutive correct predictions for the matches of the German national team and for the final.

Guessing game: Paul shot to world renown after selecting mussel boxes emblazoned with the flags of the World Cup teams that would go on to win the matches in question

‘He was dear to all our hearts and we will sorely miss him. It is a comforting thought that he had a good life with us with the best possible care delivered by a committed team.

‘His success made him almost a bigger story than the World Cup itself.'

Object of affection: Photographers surround the monument of Paul

Memorial to World Cup Predicting Octopus Opens

source: dailymail [endtext]

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